Cultural Orientation Week Goa, India

Enjoy a week to settle in to your new surrounds and learn about the culture and customs. Get to know your fellow volunteers, enjoy cultural excursions, temple visits, walking tours and adventures, cooking and language classes, traditional dance shows and more!

we need you in India

  • India is one of the poorest countires in the world, with 2 thirds living in poverty.
  • According to UNICEF, about 25% of children in India have no access to education, with higher rates of girls not attending school.
  • 43% of childen under five years are underweight and around 61 million children are stunted due to malnutrition.
  • Even though there is a law about no child labour under age 14, it’s estimated by aid agencies, that there could be up to 65 million children aged 6-14 working.

group outside the Taj Mahal


Ready to volunteer abroad? Complete your application online in 5 min 


Not sure which program is right for you? Contact us for more info


Let’s talk about it! Schedule a preferred time and date to chat via phone or video   

does Cultural Week Involve?

  • Become comfortable with your new surroundings and settle in before your project starts
  • Explore the local areas- walking tours, cultural excursions, temple visits, cooking classes, language lessons & yoga lessons
  • Meet your fellow volunteers and make friends before your project
  • Become immersed in local life by practicing your new language skills with the locals!

volunteers in front of sunset in India

Why Involvement Volunteers International?

  • Non Profit Organisation & Charity
  • Over 30 Years Expertise Globally
  • Low Program Fees – From US$295
  • Excellent Safety Record, In-Country 24/7 Support & Emergency Assistance
  • 1 Application Fee – Multiple Countries

alex stock india

Project Description






  MIN AGE: 16+

  SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS: Criminal background check required

volunteers in india
walking around ruins in Goa
group at the beach
cooking class
group at temple
yoga class
view over Goa beach
group at teakwondo class
volunteers in front of sunset in India
group photo on 28 day India trip
Cultural orientation india
cultural orientation projects
walking to village


For standard and specialty India placements, you can chose between 3 very unique experiences in either Goa, Updaipur or Sikkim. Given the nature of India and it’s ability to culture shock even the most seasoned travelers, a one week orientation is the ideal way to become comfortable in your new surroundings.

This is a great way to settle in and get to know your fellow volunteers while learning as much as possible about the destination, the culture and local customs so you can get the best our or your experience. You’ll receive language lessons, cooking classes, yoga sessions, sightseeing, visits to authentic Indian homes, workshops that will introduce you to the culture, visits to our project locations and more.


Goa, Kerala
The beach goers destination with the right mix of infrastructure and order coupled with that crazy un-ordered Indian charm. Goa is a really fun destination, with plenty of party goers and a relaxed funky vibe great for the free spirited types who want a more ‘westernized’ taste of India!

Project Tasks

  • Learn about the local language, culture and norms
  • Interact with the community and other volunteers
  • See some local sights and get to know your new surroundings 

Food & Accommodation

The Goa Volunteer centre is a large western style house with a lovely garden and large outdoor area. The house features and hot water (solar powered), WiFi, dining room, mini library and travel desk, lounge areas, television with satellite connection, safety lockers and lockable rooms, fridge and western style toilets and purified water. Bed linen is provided, however you should bring your own towel. You’ll be sharing a room with max of 2-4 volunteers at any one time in single gender rooms. You can wash your clothes by hand otherwise there is laundry services available for an additional fee. The centre is located located about 1 hour from the airport and about a 15 min walk to the nearest supermarket with ATM and personal SIM card for additional Wifi if desired as the quality of internet is not the greatest! The closest city is Mapusa.

You will be provided with three meals a day on weekdays and two meals per day on weekends. The meals are a mix of Western and Indian food, consisting mainly of vegetarian dishes including rice and vegetables. You can expect to have a chicken dish about twice per week. You can also use the kitchen facilities to cook for yourself or eat out at any of the local restaurants. 

goa accommodation
goa accommodation
goa accommodation
goa dorm
goa bathroom
goa dorm
goa accommodation


Standard Projects

– Cultural Orientation Week, Darjeeling
– Kindergarten Teaching, Darjeeling
– English Teaching, Darjeeling
– Community Support & Education, Goa
– Community Construction, Goa
– Animal Shelter, Goa

All prices in USD

  • 1 Week – $395
  • 2 Weeks – $410
  • 3 Weeks – $620
  • 1 Month – $960
  • 2 Months – $1980
  • 3 Months – $2760

Vol House

What’s Included
  • Accommodation
  • Meals
  • Airport Pickup
  • Local Transportation
  • 1 Day Orientation
  • 24/7 In-Country Support
  • Project Materials & Equipment
  • Pre-departure Expert Advice
  • Preperation Tools & Checklists
  • Certificate of Completion

– US$275 application fee applies in addition to program fees
– Application fee is one off per person (unlimited placements)
Click Here to convert the below prices to your local currency
– Discounts may apply if travelling in a pair or group!
– All credit card /international fees included in below pricing! 🙂


On our first visit to the school the entire school greeted us at the gates. The children placed flower wreathes around our necks and performed a Hindu blessing. As we walked through the entrance the school children showered us with flower petals and then performed a series of native hindu and Indian songs and greetings. We were completely blown away…..
KatrinaIndia Bodhgaya School Project
I used my lengthy nursing background and training to diagnose and treat some basic conditions but had to refer some serious conditions to the local doctors as it was the right thing to do for the patient. Dhirendra got us more of the medicine we needed and we were able to service several villages.
TrishaIndia Bodhgaya School Project
my very favourite was volunteering with the absolute cutest children and seeing their smiling faces every day. I will miss those little monkeys. Goodbye crazy, beautiful, frustrating and inspiring India. I have learnt a whole lot of patience from you and you will be missed!
SimoneIndia Bodhgaya School Project
The project was seriously amazing, the amount of diversity with the activities was totally unexpected and made the experience ten times better than I would have ever imagined!……Seriously know that I’ll be heading back to the Bodhgaya project at some point in my life.
NikIndia Bodhgaya School Project
I can honestly say that volunteering with IVI has been the best experience! That’s why I decided to do a second IVI program this year, I have absolutely no regrets and wouldn’t change a thing. It was amazing living with the friendly locals in their simplistic (very hot) lifestyle.
SimoneIndia Bodhgaya School Project
My volunteer placement in Bodhgaya was a profoundly rich experience, which I’m quite sure has altered my path in life to align more closely with my soul’s purpose. I spent a lot of time with the kids at the school, and I am indebted to them for opening my heart. It is incredibly humbling, rewarding and inspiring to see how easy it can be to make a difference to the lives of people who deserve it.
BradIndia Bodhgaya School Project
I cannot put into words my experience here, the children, the villages, the people, the staff are some of the best people I have met in my life so far. I am very sad to be leaving, as I’m sure everyone is. I hope to return sometime next year if my circumstances allow me too. This place will always hold a special place in my heart and I would recommend it to everyone I meet.
Sophie Blackwell
Sophie BlackwellIndia Bodhgaya School Project
To everyone who has helped me to raise an incredible £540…The children of Bihar say THANK YOU! After intense effort, Bolibigar Village now has a fixed roof, electrical lights and fans in the classroom. In the next few days they will be getting a fence, gate and cover for the well.
LaurenIndia Bodhgaya School Project
I’m truly thankful for the past two months I’ve spent in this special country. I’ve met so many beautiful and inspiring people and have been exposed to a completely different way of living and have seen a completely different appreciation for life. I will cherish the memories, the friends and all the unconditional love and smiles I received
Daisy Coffey
Daisy CoffeyIndia Bodhgaya School Project
The entire team at Bodhi Tree were incredibly friendly and supportive and overall so kind to us during our stay. Everyone involved from Monika, Dhirendra, Khan and Ramesh at the volunteer centre to all the teachers at the school, were incredible in giving us such a wonderful experience.
Lucy Cornwell
Lucy CornwellIndia Bodhgaya School Project
I had some great opportunities during my stay. I spoke to the Commander of a local military unit about the nutritional requirements of his troops, after he expressed his concerns with their weight gain. I was involved in facilitating intercultural discussions around women’s empowerment and the importance of education with local university students. And I was able to help out with the women’s empowerment and disabled student projects that the school was running as well.
Sarah Wainewright
Sarah WainewrightIndia Bodhgaya School Project
I can say I have found my Enlightenment through my own battles and suffering, through the eyes of people who have nothing but have everything at the same time, through helping others, by taking nothing for granted
El Rowland
El RowlandIndia Bodhgaya School Project


Is Cultural Week in India Right for Me?

If you want to gain a head start on your projects and feel comfortable in your new surroundings, before you begin, this week is a fantastic way to do just that! It gives you time to adjust before your project begins, to explore the local area and to learn more about the culture and customs. This can greatly help you to communicate with the locals on your projects. 

What’s Included in the Volunteer Fees

  • Accommodation
  • 3 meals p/day weekdays / 2 meals p/day weekends
  • Arrival airport transfer (Sat/Sun arrivals)
  • Filtered drinking water, coffee & tea
  • 1 day orientation
  • Daily transportation to project
  • In country 24/7 support & emergency assistance
  • Fundraising support
  • University course credits (where applicable)
  • Certificate of Completion

What’s Not Included

  • Airfares
  • Travel Insurance
  • Tours, Souvenirs & spending money

Arrival Information

Programs begin every Monday, and volunteers are required to arrive the day prior, for orientation before the project. Your accommodation on the Sunday is included in the program fees.

A free airport pickup is included when arriving to Dabolim International Airport (GOI). You must arrive between Sunday 00:00 to 24:00 on Sunday.

If arriving outside the pickup times we charge an additional fee for any extra night’s accommodation before your program, and another fee for a private transfer.

Alternatively, if arriving early you could wait at the arrival’s terminal for the pickup time, book accommodation at the airport and meet us during the pickup times or make your own way to the project (we will advise on how to do this).

From the airport to accommodation, it takes 45 minutes by road.   

What does a Typical Day Involve?

Sunday – Arrive at your chosen destintaion.  Upon arrival, you’ll be picked up and transferred to the volunteer center to settle in.

Monday to Friday (A general overview)

  • Overview of India culture, religion, customs, history, geography, social issues and how you can help!
  • Group discussions, debates, lectures etc
  • Basic language lessons (English is widely spoken all throughout the country (especially Goa and Rajasthan)
  • Project Overviews and project visits
  • Cooking lessons, Yoga (most days start with Yoga),
  • Local sightseeing at various markets, nature sights and local attractions
  • Group games, team building exercises & emergency procedures etc

What Happens on Weekends?

Weekends are always free for relaxing or sightseeing of your choice. Our ground operators will help you organise additional trips with special (non tourist) rates which can be paid directly in local currency. As a volunteer you will gain access to local knowledge, opportunities and value you simply would not find if staying as a standard tourist.

Are There Any Special Requirements?

No extra requirements for this program. 

For information on holidays and any programs affected, please see the following link: IN – Holidays – All Programs
Country Information

India is an eclectic and intoxicating cultural experience like no other! Home of the famous Taj Mahal, the Himalayas, the sacred Ganges river, and over 1 billion people of varying languages, cultures and beleifs, India is sure to push you to the boundaries of your comfort zone.

IVI is focused on establishing sustainable employment and education through volunteering efforts in India. Children in some of the regions we service have not had basic nutritional background. Over 950,000 newborns per year in India die from infections. Education about health for families provides a strong foundation for self-care in the communities we service in India.


India’s climte ranges from tropical down south to alpine up in the northern mountain regions. 

From April until the start of October is summer, and in most places in India, is very hot. In June the monsoon rains start in Kerala down south, and move inland. Further north and in the rural areas of Rajasthan, it can get pretty cold from December to January- sometimes as low at minus 5 degrees!

Be prepared for some hot temperatures but if in the Sikkim region, bring along some warmer clothing as it can get cold in the mountains. 

What’s the Culture Like in India?

India is a country FULL of culture! From the beautiful colours, different religions, ancient traditions and the smells of spices- India is a country like no other.  It’s the the second most populous nation after China, with over 1.2 billion people. 

The most prominant religions are Hinduism and Buddhism and around 13% of the popualrtion are Muslim. Because there are so many religions, India celebrates a large number of festivals throughout the year. Some of these include Diwali, Holi, Eid and Good Friday. 

In India, the cow is considered to be a Holy animal and you will see cars either driving around, or simply waiting if a cow is in the road holding up traffic! In some parts of India it is forbidden to eat meat or drink alcohol. 

You will see many temples in India, as well as colourful clothing, particually the sari’s that the local women wear, and many cultural dance shows and activities. 

About Involvement Volunteers International

30 Years Non Profit Experience

IVI is an Australian charity & non profit organisation founded in 1989 and is one of the pioneers of overseas volunteering successfully placing over 20,000 volunteers globally.

Affordable Volunteer Travel

We’re not motivated by shareholder profits.   Our fees are fully transparent to ensure maximum benefit where it is most needed. 

Safe & Responsible Projects

All projects include a dedicated 24/7 in-country management team, operational & risk assessment & overseas support contact.   All projects are personally inspected to ensure very high quality. 

Work Experience & University Credits

We place thousands of Uni students and can assist you with course credits and in-field experience points.   Many of our project coordinators are qualified practitioners in their respective fields allowing unique in-field supervision and Uni accreditation options 

See More

Weekends & Extra Tours

One of the most visited places in India, the Taj Mahal is absolutely stunning in person and a must do when visiting the country!
Taj Mahal
Taj MahalIndia
Amber Fort, situated within the ‘golden triangle’ is a 16th-century palace, with a mix of Hindu and Muslim patterns. The temple is very pretty with many intricate carvings and statues.
Amber Fort
Amber FortIndia
The Red Fort was home to royal Mughal emperors from around 1648 to 1857. The fort has some incredible architecture and is built from red sandstone.
Red Fort
Red FortIndia
For those that love the beach, why not pick one of our Goa projects? The town has a relaxed vibe, with many beach huts and a good nightlife.
If you want to head down south, try a visit to the beautiful Kerala region. The palm tree lined backwaters are stunning at sunrise and sunset.
All over India you will find markets of all kinds, food, spices, tourist and craft markets. Find some local produce or quirky gifts for back home.
If you are situated up north, then you must check out the Himalayan mountains. The sights are incredible!


Ready to Volunteer in India?


Ready to volunteer abroad? Complete your application online in 5 min 


Not sure which program is right for you? Contact us for more info


Let’s talk about it! Schedule a preferred time and date to chat via phone or video